California Man Smuggles 1,700 Reptiles Into US, Was Hiding 60 “On His Body”

A group of green vegetables

This is the big time.

1,700 reptiles. That has to be considered the Pablo Escobar of reptile dealers.

Did we not learn anything from the harrowing tale of the Tiger King, Joe Exotic?

Fox News says, Jose Manuel Perez was the reptile ring leader of this operation that snuck in over 1,700 reptiles from the U.S.- Mexico border.

The smuggling took place over at least six years. Perez, who also used the name “Julio Rodriguez” was caught at the border carrying sixty reptiles. The said he had dozens of lizards and four snakes. He was hiding them on his body.

A pile of trash

First of all, how does one hide SIXTY reptiles on their body? I think a video of this needs to be seen…

He played it off smooth at the border, telling customs that they were all just his “pets.”

Perez had such a big business going he had to hire people. So, he did that best thing he could and pulled his younger sister into the mix. Now she’s up on conspiracy charges.

Perez would pay people a fee to transport the reptiles he had purchased from Mexico. The pay was based on how many you brought. Seems just about the as sketchy as drug dealing…

I have to ask it again though, why do criminals always seem to be their own worst enemy? These chaps took a page out of the criminal guide lines and put all of the evidence on the internet.

They used social media to purchase the illegal reptiles and then advertised them for sale through it. Not only are the doing something illegal but they are also incriminating themselves with the largest rookie mistake.

Their stupidity is our gain… entertainment.

Perez racked up a good list of charges in the matter. He was charged with one count of conspiracy, nine counts of smuggling goods into the country, and two counts of wildlife trafficking. That doesn’t sound good.

He can face a maximum of 20-years for each smuggling count and 5-years for each wildlife trafficking count. That sounds even worse.

So, if you’re thinking of smuggling animals as a good side hustle, rethink your plan. 10/10 not worth the trouble.

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock